The 2,501 most-used characters have a ranking which expresses the relative frequency of occurrence of a character in modern Japanese. The data is based on an analysis of word frequencies in the Mainichi Shimbun over 4 years by Alexandre Girardi. Note: (a) these frequencies are biased towards words and kanji used in newspaper articles, and (b) the relative frequencies for the last few hundred kanji so graded is quite imprecise.
The "grade" of the kanji.
- G1 to G6 indicates the grade level as specified by the Japanese Ministry of Education for kanji that are to be taught in elementary school (1006 Kanji). These are sometimes called the kyōiku (education) kanji and are part of the set of jōyō (daily use) kanji;
- G8 indicates the remaining jōyō kanji that are to be taught in secondary school (additional 1130 Kanji);
- G9 and G10 indicate jinmeiyō ("for use in names") kanji which in addition to the jōyō kanji are approved for use in family name registers and other official documents. G9 (649 kanji, of which 640 are in KANJIDIC) indicates the kanji is a "regular" name kanji, and G10 (212 kanji of which 130 are in KANJIDIC) indicates the kanji is a variant of a jōyō kanji.
Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) Level
The pre-2010 level of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) in which the kanji occurs (1-4). Note that the JLPT test levels changed in 2010, with a new 5-level system (N1 to N5) being introduced. No official kanji lists are available for the new levels. The new levels are regarded as being similar to the old levels except that the old level 2 is now divided between N2 and N3, and the old levels 3 and 4 are now N4 and N5.